Friday, March 09, 2012

HB 957 John Bell Edwards - Fracking Disclosure Bill - Delta Chapter Comments

This proposed legislation provides the specific authority for DNR to promulgate rules, regulations, and orders to require the reporting of additives and ingredients of hydraulic fracturing fluid, to require reporting of concentrations of additives and ingredients, and to require reporting of the chemical family of certain ingredients with trade secret protection, and requires such reporting 30 days in advance of the fracturing operation.

Existing Louisiana DNR rule effective Oct 20, 2011 already requires operators to disclose all additives used in hydraulic fracturing fluids and the names and concentrations of chemicals which are subject to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Hazard Communication requirements (29 CFR 1910.1200) and are not deemed trade secret.  Disclosure can be made by reporting directly to the Office of Conservation or via the Frac Focus website. The Louisiana regulation has no effect on rules or laws mandating disclosure of trade secret information to health care providers. The requirements are effective for wells with drilling permits issued on or after October 20, 2011. Reporting is required only after completion of the hydraulic fracture operation.

The proposed legislation strengthens the legal basis for the current DNR rule requiring reporting of hydraulic fracturing fluids, it adds authority for a requirement to disclose additive concentrations which is not in the current rule, and it would add authority to require reporting of hydraulic fracturing fluids 30 days in advance of the hydraulic fracturing operation.

We will have to watch this bill for possible changes as it goes through legislative hearings. Its first hearing is in House Natural Resources Committee.

No comments: